Merriam Webster defines Absolute as a : free from imperfection : perfect b : free or relatively free from mixture : pure
I can tell you this, it has been 5 weeks since I decided to try leaning towards vegan. Prior to that, I wasn't even a vegetarian...probably the closest description was somewhat 'clean eating'...i.e tried to eat organic fruits and veggies, and grass fed, no hormone meat, etc. So it was a big change. And I *knew* it was never my expectation to change overnight.
I can claim that I am pretty much a full fledged vegetarian. I have had meat twice in that 5 week period, and oh boy, it is no longer for me. Not only was it not enjoyable...but it made my stomach sick. And what I thought particularly interesting, is I wouldn't wake up hungry. Why? Probably because my body was still digesting the meat. In my mind, a little gross to think about.
I have been able to get used to coffee with soy milk (if I get soy creamer from Trader Joe's even better). I have had soy lattes from Starbucks. I have had vegan frozen yogurt from a local chain called "The Skinny Dip". I even had a fabulous vegan pizza from "ZPizza".
This being said, I do not claim to be "vegan". I do order cheese pizzas, I have had milk, when we are out of Soy, and yes, I have been known to sprinkle milk chocolate chips on my vegan ice cream. However, the way I am currently seeing it, is that in 5 weeks, I have been able to NOT eat about 68 servings of meat (would've been 70 except for those 2 meat occasions). I have also drastically lowered my consumption of dairy, even if it is not completely phased out.
I think there is an expectation from our society, that if you are trying something like this it needs to be all or nothing. I feel like I am just trying to do better when I can, and maybe with time some of the other things will follow suit. I have to say, living in a more trendy area (Virginia Beach vs Rural Southeast Georgia) has made it alot easier, as restaurants offer choices. And although weight hasn't "melted" off as Kathy Freston says in her book. I am 1lb down from 5 weeks ago. This may not sound like much. But when you consider the 10lb gain in a month I had last time, I tested the vegan waters, I'd say I am doing pretty well. And regardless of weight, I feel like I get to try more adventurous food choices than before (like the Skinny Dip offers 1 Vegan flavor, so the other day I had Peach flavored..because that was the choice...why not). I feel lighter. My skin seems a bit clearer (although not today....used sunscreen on my face yesterday and so there is an uprising!!).